Tags: 1968, John, Yoko
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Interesting shot – perhaps a Two Virgins mastering (if that’s the word for it!) session. Perhaps Trident?? Calling Henry the Horse…
Mmmm, you could be onto something, it doesn’t look like Abbey Rd, i thought Trident too.
This is Apple Studios. The mastering room was behind the control room, and had an E.M.I. transfer console for cutting duties.
Trident had an elongated narrow room full of U.S. made Ampex machines. That was its competivity factor: Ampex machines.
Two Virgins Mastering???
…more tape-splices please…
perhaps the lowest fidelity of all Beatle releases…
actually, Yoko giving a wailing rendition of the Kama Sutra would’ve been a nice start for those who judge albums by their covers. Find the hidden dignity in the picture…or, play it backwards for more explicit audio gems…
A sonic delight and the beginning of inflation for two balloons
called Jock and Yono…
Henry, I didn’t think the studio was up and running until the Beatles first used it in January 1969. And this is definitely 1968.
This looks like 1969, not 1968.
and it’s quarter inch tape, not the stuff used for recording in the studio, so my first thought was that they were making a dub for John to take away….
This is not 1968, it is 1969. That is the window to the control room behind Lennon. Check Apple Studios croquis in Recording the Beatles. The wood covering on the walls is the same as Trident and Olympic as per Beatles request.
You can see Harrison’s 3M M23 8-track machine through the window pane, beside the right wall.
Sorry but that is late 1968 – not 1969. But it leads me to now conclude that the basement studio was being used for minor things prior to the Get Back sessions.
Ooh!!, Henry, outstanding! .. so what timeframe 69 are we looking at here, has to be early, before the whiskers took over.
A Car, henry, Miss Tammy…
Thank you for adding so much to the greatness of this blog…I’m most thrilled when we get into details.
I was wondering if this is the ‘Magic Alex’ version Apple Studios. If so, is the “B-52 console” actually in use/operation here? Any help is appreciated!
Tam, where did you find this shot? Looking at the hair, I would date it Dec 1968 – the same time as the dentist waiting room interview. The stuff on tape could well be the Queen Charlotte Hospital material that ended up on Side 2 of LWTL (recorded the previous month)
I was looking at the hair, too!
I thought I was seeing some long curls but I think that’s a pair of headphones. I do like the theory of LifeWithTheLions tape. The tape recorder that we see in the hospital photos wouldn’t have held a 7″ reel…but all those 5″ reels would’ve been spliced onto a 7″ reel like the one we see. But, so would have Two Virgins. Too bad, we can’t even see if John is wearing the talisman necklace. We need more pictures…
I would think this is January or February 1969.
No, that is not the Mardas’s console, which would have been in the adjacent room, the one we can see through the double glazed window panel. The one in the foreground is a transfer console. It is used to master, equalize, compress, and crossfade stereo or mono tapes prior to sending them to a cutting facility to create the matrixes for each of side of a record. E.M.I. Studios had its own cutting facility, but Apple Studios did not. E.M.I. Studios also had a mastering room, called Room 11, with a modified REDD.51 transfer console (one of the three REDD.51 ever made). I believe this transfer console was loaned from E.M.I. as well. Hence, I place this in late January, as the other E.M.I. equipment loaned to Apple after the Mardas’s console incident.
The wood-strip treatment of the walls was one of the good things that Mardas did. He copied after Trident and Olympic because the Beatles favoured those studios.
Correction. Four REDD.51 ever made. One went to Studio Three, another to Studio Two, the next one to Room 11 and the last one to E.M.I. Milan, and is now in Mark Knopfler’s British Grove Studios, London.
Thank you, henry…
(Re: REDD.51 number 4): I hope there are no plans to ever allow the Beatles equipment to ever leave the facility located at 3 Abbey Road…
Hi Datey, i turned this up on a random Tumblr, with no other info .. but Miss Tammy’s beady eyes knew this wasn’t your average run of the mill pic, i knew it would get a few juices flowing. I’m still erring towards Dec 68, nothing to base that on, just forty years of looking at a billion photos of John.
If that’s a button(badge) on John’s left lapel, perhaps someone will recognize it and identify its fab significance(hence, chronological placement). Not only…but also: Can anybody confirm a set of headphones around John’s neck. I can’t tell if that’s what I’m seeing. If those are extra long locks of hair, then this could easily be after the New Year…
And, any ID on the guy in the suit?
There is no actual Beatles’ (1962-1970) desk located at or property of Abbey Road Studios at the moment. There is only one Beatles’ desk, namely the REDD.37 from Studio One Serial Number 58121A, that is now property of some Mr. Lenny Kravitz. Mark Knopfler’s REDD.51 was never at 3 Abbey Road. The other two REDD.51 desks and one REDD.37 desk have never surfaced. The TG12345 Mk I has surfaced. Some of its cassettes are part of State of the Ark Studio in Richmond, London.
As for the keyboards: Both Model B grand pianos were sold and are untrackable. The Model D 270 grand, called “Big old 270” is still in Studio One. The FX Console, four-octave celeste, harmonium, chimes, and CW-9-S electric harpsichord, were bought by McCartney from Abbey Road Studios in 1980 and reside now in Hog Hill Mill Studio. The five-octave celeste, the RT-3 organ with its 122 cabinet, one of the studio pianos and the Vertegrand are still in Studio Two. The DSO-1 organ and the timpani are missing.
Oh Henry, i feel sick reading that So none of the 62-70 desks or tape machines etc are at Abbey Rd?, i know Lenny Cradock has one, but man .. how could they offload that stuff? at least Macca has the ‘Because’ spinet.
That’s really intoxicating and sobering information. I’m in shock and awe as per Tammy’s last comment. Sacrilege, heresy, uncooooooooool!
For those involved in the transaction:
this is Sacred Territory…
Enter at your own risk.
Indeed there is at least one J37 4-track tape recorder at 3 Abbey Road. The B.T.R./2 and B.T.R./3 mono and stereo tape recorders are long gone. Abbey Road uses a Studer A-80 with mono or stereo heads for playback of master tapes. If 4-track or 8-track playback is needed there are special playback heads for the A-80 available. The tapes have long been baked to avoid erasing or recording over historical material. Due to the use of A-80 machines instead of the old B.T.R./2 and Studer J37, or 3M M23 8-track machines, there is no way to recreate the A.D.T. effect today at Abbey Road. That is why you will not find that effect on the Anthology LPs. The same thing happened to the echo chambers. Althought Studio Two echo chamber has been restored, the S.T.E.E.D. system used as pre-delay to it is unavailable since it required the old B.T.R./2 mono machines.
For the Anthology project Abbey Road rented former balance technician Dave Harries’s TG12345 Mk II desk. The desk was finally bought by Abbey Road Studios and is one of the two TG12345 desks available today (the other TG12345 desk is a MK III bought from a private collector (E.M.I./Abbey Road Studios never had an Mk III desk). The Mk II, was used for McCartney’s Chaos and Creating at Abbey Road DVD.
Could that be the tape from the “Two Virgins” recordings? Maybe? Just guessing…
In the foreground is a Telefunken M10 1/4 inches stereo machine, which was used by Apple Studios as a transfer machine. The M10 had a console to the left of the machine to monitor and balance recording levels.
Here are some photographs of the machine:
I’m just amazed John ever got it together to press ‘play and record’ on the machine the night they recorded Two Virgins even under the best conditions, John was lucky if he could figure out how to work a can opener, add to that probably being stoned, and filled with lust ..
I guess we have to be grateful for small mercies, and the studio and equipment is still as intact as it is, it horrifies me when i hear of, and see studios disapear, or changed in a big way. I remember walking around NY trying to find the locations of all the Fab related studios, most were gone. I just found this old post by me http://beatlephotoblog.com/starting-over-2 Plus this one http://www.tammytingles.com/?p=829
In the photograph, they were probably editing tape, since the head covers are removed from the machine in order to precisely mark the tape with china graph pencil just on the edit spot. Removing the head covers is a tedious proceeding that involves unscrewing lots of tiny screws, removing parts, and trying to avoid losing all the parts and screws.
thanks for the Telefunken machine photos. Is the reel of tape blank and awaiting a custom length to be cut/spun onto a take-up reel? Also, what kind of hub is the supply reel? Is it ‘reely’ one sided?
Thank you, ever so kindly for your great info…and time!
(my last question was in reference to the 2nd Telefunken picture) Thanks
Is it true Isodora Duncan, worked at Telefunken?
I don’t know…
Telefunken is a big name in valves/tubes.
I never knew they made tape machines.
Very nice machinery!
Anyway…wasn’t Isadora Duncan a poet…
but, didn’t know it?
The Beatles’ might have been familiar with the Telefunken M10 tape recorder since E.M.I. Studios owned a couple of 4-track M10s, and the Beatles used them during 1964 and 1965 until the Studer J37 took over. The Telefunken M10 were not very comfortable since they used unflanged (or one flanged reels to be precisely) take up reels. Hence, when spoolling the operator had to place his hand over the take up reel to avoid the tape from lifting and making a mess. Eventually, E.M.I. Studios fitted their M10 with plastic flanges screwed to the metal reel for safety issues. In the photograph, the metal empty reel -the one next to Lennon- is the take up reel.
In the Apple transfer room picture, the supply reel is probably recorded and they are about to listen to it so as to cut it and splice the but ends as it requires. The supply reel seems to be similar to a Quantegy 5″ reel, like this 661 model:
The take-up reel is yer regular Telefunken M10 single flanged “pancake” reel.
Henry, again, thanks for your insight, amazing info and knowledge. Tho this site may drift to discussions of flatulance, harvesting (Here come de judge), Rotalacta’s and inappropriate hair growth, i do love my techo trainspotting. I didn’t realize your were a bottomless well (the same can’t be said about me) and like Datey is a .. ummm, bottomless pit of dates. Nevermind, feel free to continue the education.
This site IS the BEST!!!
Thanks for the kind words. I am glad that my ramblings are of any help or interest in you blog.
Oh no Mr Horse, rant away, as i said, underneath the armpit hair devotee i really am a tech head, and Date head, but the speed with which i’m asailed by photo’s has limited my time to dig deeper into nailing dates and info myself. To paraphrase Mr Horse from Ren and Stimpy ‘Hmmm, yes Sir!, i like it!’.
Another perspective of the same room showing a bit more of the Telefunken M10 stereo machine. This is Unfinished Music No. 2 Life with the Lions editing and mastering, probably 12th March 1969. Phil McDonald is operating the M10, Glyn Johns is seen next to the window panel.http://www.beatlesource.com/bs/scans/pix/johnsession/johnapplez.jpg
So THATS where those photos are from! .. Thanx be Mr Horse!.
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